Past Exhibitions

Treasures from Monzeki Temple
January 26, 2016 - February 21, 2016

Kyoto is home to numerous temples associated with the Imperial household. In particular, monzeki temples where Imperial princes, princesses, and nobles took monastic orders were of high status, and retain vestiges of court culture to this day. Exhibited here are treasures associated with the Imperial household, particularly those kept by monzeki temples.

Ninna-ji is the head temple of the Omuro school of the Shingon sect of Buddhism, and was home to the retired Emperor Uda (867-931) after he entered monastic seclusion. Unryū-in and Hiden-in are sub-temples of Sennyū-ji, head temple of the Sennyū-ji school of Shingon Buddhism. Sennyū-ji was a mortuary temple for aristocrats and the Imperial house, and is home to the official tombs of many past Emperors.

Shōren-in, Sanzen-in, and Manshu-in are among the five revered monzeki temples of the Tendai sect (the others being Myōhō-in and Bishamon-dō). Enman-in is an independent temple today, but was originally of the Jimon school of Tendai Buddhism, and is located on the grounds of Onjō-ji (Mii-dera) Temple, the head temple of the Tendai sect.

Besides these, there are many other temples patronized by the Imperial household, and viewing their treasures gives one a renewed sense of the immense depth and richness of Kyoto's history.

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